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SMA Editorial Dept. SMA Editorial Dept. 19/10/2023 5 min read

Pen Name: Rockkey
Country: Malaysia
Age: 34

Entry title:The Thrilling Night
Round: SMA19: “Overflowing Tears”
Award: Honorable Mention

“Complete your idea and draw it out, even if it is a failure. Gaining failure or success is better than gaining nothing.

About SMA

How does it feel to receive a SILENT MANGA AUDITION® award?
It gave me the confidence to continue work on the next title.

What was the inspiration behind your awarded work?
I’m not really able to answer this… It was just a result of limited conditions and analysis of what I am able to produce with the resources at hand.

What challenges did you face while making your manga? How did you overcome them?
The story itself was very challenging! I revised it many times and scrapped many thoughts. I wanted to give up multiple times over self doubt and lack of skill. In the end, I set a rule for myself: completion over perfection, and to keep progressing, even if I see problems and mistakes. 


About your Manga

How and when did you start making manga? Any advice for beginners?
I only just started making manga seriously this year (in 2023). I am a beginner myself, and I have much to learn. 

Do you draw your manga digitally or by hand? What are your go-to digital or analogue tools?
I draw digitally. Pen and ink are not something I could easily access 10 years ago. My tools are Intuos 4 and Clip Studio.

What was the first manga you picked up?
Flame of Recca was my first self-purchased manga. If we talk about more early age, that would be Doraemon that I borrowed from a friend.

Which manga changed your life?
I didn’t think about this before, but many manga gave me many different experiences. There’s always something new and entertaining in every manga story that I read.

What kind of manga do you want to make next?
I wish to make something that can make my blood boil and also love stories.

About you

What do you do when you’re not making manga? How do you relax?
I draw illustrations, read manga, or watch movies and videos on YouTube.

What industry do you work in (if manga making isn’t your primary job)?
I currently work as an illustration freelancer, but I’m trying to break into the manga industry. 

Where do you see your manga career in 5 years time?
Hopefully it will be a financial success, so it can be a long term career.

What manga making advice would you give to your younger self if you could?
To study the foundation of anatomy, shape, and practice earlier. It is a better thing to do than gaming. 

What advice would you give to people entering the SILENT MANGA AUDITION®?
Complete your idea and draw it out, even if it is a failure. Gaining failure or success is better than gaining nothing. 

Thank you, Rockkey! We’re eagerly expecting your next manga masterpiece!

There’s time until December 4th to join SMA20 and have a chance to develop your potential as a manga creator with us in Japan!

SMA Editorial Dept.

SMA Editorial Dept.